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Recommendation for Sunday afternoon lunch/brunch in Boulder?

Need a recommendation for a Sunday brunch/lunch in Boulder in December.
I went to CU for my undergrad but I haven't been back to visit since 2005 and I'm finally making a trip out for skiing this winter.
I persuaded my husband to drive through Boulder on our way to Vail so he can see my old stomping grounds.
We'll be flying into DIA around noon and then driving to Boulder, so should arrive by 2 pm.
We are both foodies and we'll only be in Boulder for ONE meal so I want to make sure I pick the right thing :)
I don't know what's good anymore since it has been so long - I used to really like The Med, Brasserie 10 10, Mateo, and actually this amazing hole in the wall Italian place called Il Pastaio in the Sunrise Shopping Center that made amazing gnocci (but wasn't open weekends).

I would love to know what the hot places are now - or if the old ones are still good!

Thank you!

Il Pastaio
3075 Arapahoe Ave Unit B, Boulder, CO 80303

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    1. I think the majority of restaurants stop offering brunch by 2pm, so you'd need to check the specific restaurant. I know that Snooze, a new brunch place in Boulder, is open till 2:30, so they'd potentially be an option.

      Hard to say where to recommend, though, without more info. Do you want a higher-end place (like Brasserie or Mateo), or a funkier place (like Snooze)? Brunch-specific, or a place that would do a variety of food? Any particular cuisines you like? Any limitations (vegetarian, vegan, allergies, etc.)?

      1. Tangerine is open until 2:30. But agreed, the timing isn't perfect.

        Pizza is a hot new thing in Boulder, maybe go to Pizzeria Locale (same people that own Frasca) for some very authentic and delicious Neapolitan pizza?

        1 Reply
        1. re: LurkerDan

          Sadly, I can't eat pizza because its a "fresh dough" and that gives me migraines (fresh bagels too :( - very sad)

        2. Hi, Thanks to all for your help!
          We are both very much foodies - farm to table, good quality food/service, not too stuffy :)
          Snooze opened after I left CO so I've never been - I used to brunch at Le Peep and Walnut Cafe.
          We'd be OK with either lunch OR brunch, as long as the place is delish!

          4 Replies
          1. re: theamusedbouche

            Well, I'm kind of high on Snooze right now (just went for the first time), so I'd recommend it as my favorite brunch in Boulder at the moment. They can do just about everything gluten-free, so I don't think your dough allergy would be a problem.

            Also, if you like high-end creative Mexican, Centro has a great brunch that they do until 3pm on Sundays (plus you can order off the regular menu).

            950 Pearl Street, Boulder, CO 80302

            1. re: theamusedbouche

              And sadly, I visited Le Peep a couple of weeks ago and it was pretty horrible. I don't know if we just caught them on an off day or what, but it was pretty close to inedible and our server seemed personally affronted every time we asked for anything (like menus, or silverware, neither of which was given to us without asking for it). I used to like Le Peep, so hopefully it was an off day. But I wouldn't risk it if you only have one day in town.

              1. re: monopod

                Sad for LePeep! I remember huge post-party college breakfasts there were always fun. But, sometimes places just go downhill

              2. re: theamusedbouche

                Snooze is really good! I don't know about the Boulder location, but I've enjoyed the Denver locations a lot.

              3. The places that you mentioned and remember fondly are all still there, but mid-afternoon on a Sunday is a real challenge. Most places close (or at least stop serving brunch) at 2. The Kitchen [Next Door] on Pearl just west of The Kitchen (the old Tom's Tavern location) opens at 11. Service might be ongoing thru the evening. You'd have to check. The Pinyon (1710) serves Sunday brunch but is very cagey about its opening hours. Catch an earlier flight????? Good luck.

                1. Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse - wonderful setting, good food and obviously, great tea.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: Heyteacher

                    I'm gonna second Dushanbe - I'm not sure what their brunch is like, but my best friend and I ate an early dinner there on Monday when she was visiting, and it was delightful. The selection of teas is truly wonderful.

                    I'm gonna say skip Snooze. My best friend and I ate there on her visit too, and her response was along the lines of "meh," which is what I was thinking both times I ate there. I mean, it's good, but is it worth the price or the hassle? I've eaten there twice, and I'm just not that impressed. But I'm more of a diner breakfast type - I love just bacon and eggs with hashbrowns and toast.

                    1. re: Heatherb

                      RE: Snooze, I guess it's all about what you're into. If you want simple diner breakfast for cheap, then Snooze ain't your place. But if you want something different and a little upscale, then I think Snooze is pretty awesome. Below is a picture of a split order with their prosciutto and talleggio eggs benedict for one egg, and their caprese (heirloom tomato, housemade mozzarella and pesto) on the other. Most orders also come with the hashbrown cake. Not your standard diner fare for sure.

                      1. re: monopod

                        I just drooled all over my keyboard. That looks amazing.

                        1. re: RobynS

                          I agree. I think monopod's photo just sold me on getting my booty into Snooze soon and trying that.

                          1. re: rlm

                            FYI, the caprese benedict isn't on the menu anymore because really good tomatoes are no longer readily available. I love that Snooze recognizes that and changed out the menu to something more seasonally appropriate. I went again and had the same dish, but with an Italian white bean ragout benedict instead of the caprese - it was also delicious. This time, though, I got there after 9am on a Saturday and endured a 45-minute wait (for 3 people). Go early, or on a weekday.

                            1. re: monopod

                              Have you tried the Pineapple Upside Down Pancake yet? One of my favorite dishes from Snooze is the Graceland Pancake (banana pancakes topped with peanut butter, syrup, & bacon) not on the menu but you can ask for it. Seriously fantastic!!!! I also love getting a side of hashbrowns topped with a poached egg and smothered in their green chile.

                              They used to have a Pork Benedict that was served on a cheesy polenta cake, shredded pork, poached & egg & topped with Hollandaise, I'd swap the Hollandaise for Green Chile. Would love if they brought t back.

                              I never got down to try the Duck Confit Benedict while it was on the menu. Still wishing I had. It sounded pretty amazing.

                    2. Thanks to everyone for the suggestions! Snooze looks great and so does Centro.
                      I remember the Mexican food in Boulder being outstanding so maybe we will try Centro :)

                      950 Pearl Street, Boulder, CO 80302

                      1. Yikes! The one review of Centro on Chowhound is for brunch and it is an awful review.... but it was from a long time ago.
                        Has anyone been recently and had a good experience?

                        (also keeping the tea house in mind, but centro - if it is good - might have more creative food)

                        950 Pearl Street, Boulder, CO 80302

                        5 Replies
                        1. re: theamusedbouche

                          Haven't been for brunch, but have been a number of times and never experienced what happened to that reviewer.

                          1. re: theamusedbouche

                            That review is from a couple of years ago, and it sounds like they were having a rough morning - perhaps key servers or kitchen people didn't show up that day or something. I've never had an experience like that there. Check Yelp reviews for a more representative spectrum. I've had some excellent, excellent meals there, and also some that were just OK - which is true of almost every good restaurant I've been to multiple times - but overall I think they do a great job. The tortas are my current favorite item, FWIW.

                            The Teahouse is nice, but in my opinion the food plays second fiddle to the building itself. It's good, don't get me wrong, but I don't know a lot of locals that regularly go there based on the quality of the food - it's a place we tend to bring out of town friends, largely because the location is just so amazing. Food-wise, I think they suffer a bit from their attempt to present an "international" menu with dishes from all over the world; when you're using the same generic flatbread as pizza crust, gyro wrap, naan, and tortilla, it makes it hard for any of the individual dishes to really stand out. But that's just one person's opinion, perhaps others will stand up for the food there.

                            1. re: monopod

                              I have always found the Teahouse's food uneven, some things very good and some things just ok. I have not had anything transcendent there (but that's a tough standard). I don't know why things are uneven, but my guess has always been what monopod suggests, that the variety of the menu is too much to overcome.

                              And he's spot on about it being a place I take visitors but don't go to otherwise. That said, I take visitors there for a reason, because it's a very cool place to enjoy a meal.

                              1. re: monopod

                                I guess I'd stand up for the Dushambe food, a little bit. I don't disagree with monopod's assessment that the building stands out more than the food--but that's quite a standard as the building is simply stunning, and the food is simply better than average (I've enjoyed both the curry omelette and the masala dosa very much). And as Claire points out, if we're talking 3ish pm on a Sunday, I'd say better than just 'you could do worse'...

                                1. re: scrabblecat

                                  Like Scrabblecat, I go to the Dushanbe Teahouse mainly for the fabulous building. I consider it a bonus to have a really good meal there.

                            2. Not sure how late Tangerine serves, I have had two wonderful breakfasts there recently. They are at 28th and Iris, part of the Arugula Restaurant family.

                              1. The greenbriar inn has a pretty amazing buffet, I know for a fact they make fresh cured bagels with lox(my fav) and they have prime rib, leg of lamb, and an omelet bar, too much to list. Not bad for the variety.